country mile: Idiom Meaning and Origin

What does ‘country mile’ mean?

The idiom "country mile" means a very long distance or a significant difference. It originated from the idea that country areas are vast and distances are greater compared to urban areas.

Idiom Explorer

Elusive Distance

The idiom "run a mile" is closely related to "country mile." While "country mile" refers to a long distance, "run a mile" is used to describe someone's desire to distance themselves from a situation or person as quickly as possible. Although the two phrases have different meanings, they both convey the idea of an extensive amount of distance or separation.

The country road stretched out for miles.

"by a long way" is another idiom that shares similarities with "country mile." Like "country mile," it signifies a substantial difference or margin. However, "by a long way" focuses more on the extent of superiority or advantage. It implies that a person or thing is significantly better or ahead of others in a particular aspect, surpassing expectations by a considerable degree.

Lastly, we have the idiom "come a long way," which emphasizes progress or improvement. While "country mile" relates to physical distance, "come a long way" speaks to personal or collective development. It indicates that someone or something has made significant strides in their journey, surpassing obstacles or limitations to reach a much-improved state.

"country mile" is an idiom that signifies a considerable distance or difference. It can be related to other idioms such as "run a mile," "by a long way," and "come a long way," as they all involve the notion of extensive measure, separation, or progress.

Example usage

Here are three examples of how the idiom country mile can be used in a sentence:

  • She won the race by a country mile.
  • The new restaurant is the best in town by a country mile.
  • He outperformed his colleagues by a country mile.

The phrase country mile is often used to emphasize a significant distance or difference. It is typically used to describe a situation where one person or thing surpasses others by a large margin or extent. In the examples provided, the idiom is used in a literal sense to convey a clear and noticeable difference in the race, the quality of the restaurant, and the performance of an individual compared to others.

More "Distance" idioms